The Dodgers have to pay $2.5 million to buy out the option; thus, they could have had him for $7.5 million, because the $2.5 million is a sunk cost (he gets that whether he plays for the Dodgers or not). Sure, the Dodgers may wish they hadn’t agreed to the option in the first place, but now that it is in place, all that matters is whether or not he’s worth the additional $7.5 million they would have to pay to retain his services. It appears that he is, without even taking into account Garland’s added value to a winning team.
Maybe the Dodgers have other plans for pitching, but I have to believe the McCourts’s divorce is playing a role here. This is an organization that has been willing to spend in the past, and now they’re clamming up over an awfully small amount of money.